Friday, 24 July 2009

Mint and White Chocolate Cupcakes

MintandWhiteChoc I’ve only been ‘into’ blogging for a couple of months. Last month I discovered Iron Cupcakes. and got very excited when I saw that the Iron Cupcake challenges were going to be coming to Britain. Sadly, though, the challenge has only got as far as London, and that’s quite a way from me. But, the good news for people like me, who can’t easily participate in face-to-face Iron Cupcake events, is that there is also a web-based challenge – IronCupcake:Earth. I discovered this, and planned to enter last month, when the ingredient was summer berries (yum, yum!!). Sadly, though, last month was pretty crazy and I didn’t manage to create and post something in time…So, I decided to enter this month. On the day the ingredient for this month was posted online, I eagerly checked it, brimming with enthusiasm and ideas, and immediately hit a down. The ingredient this month is ‘herbs’. My first thought was that I’d never be able to come up with something good for that, but over time I started to think of all sorts of possibilities, and this is the first that I’ve actually seen to completion. I have a couple of other ideas, but realistically speaking, am not sure if I’m going to get round to them by the end of the month. So, here it is, my first, and possibly only for this month, IronCupcake:Earth competition entry: Mint and White Chocolate Cupcakes. The recipe for these is below. In what follows, 1 cup = 250 mls. I just use a 250 ml cup, and when the recipe asks for half or a quarter of a cup, I just fill the cup to roughly that amount – hence the ‘some, some and some’ of my blog title! Its a bit hit and miss, but it works for me…I hope you enjoy these. The few people that have tasted them liked them. Oh, and before I give the recipe, I just want to say a special thank you to my husband who spent a very long time, taking LOTS of pictures so that I’d have a big selection to choose from for this post.

For the cake mixture, you’ll need:

3 eggs

A 200 gram bar of white chocolate

1/2 cup white sugar

1/4 cup margarine or butter (I used margarine in this)

About 11 medium to large mint leaves thinly sliced or chopped very small.

2 cups of flour

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

Pinch of salt

For the icing, you’ll need:

A 200 gram bar of white chocolate

1/2 cup icing sugar

1/4 cup margarine or butter (I used margarine)

1/4 cup milk

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

2 egg whites.

To make the cake:

1. Separate the eggs. Then beat the egg whites until they reach soft peak stage, then add the egg yolks, and beat until thoroughly mixed and frothy.MintandWhiteChoc1 2. Beak the white chocolate into little pieces. Then, in a double boiler, or (as I did), in a heatproof bowl over boiling water, melt together the white chocolate, sugar, margarine and mint leaves. Keep stirring the mixture over heat for 10-15 minutes until all the chocolate has melted (and then a few minutes after that) and don’t worry if the fat/oil starts to separate from the rest. Just keep stirring it together. Then take the mixture off the heat and beat it for a couple of minutes to mix everything together thoroughly and introduce some air to the mixture.MintandWhiteChoc2 3. Slowly (about a dessertspoon at a time) add and thoroughly mix about half the beaten egg into the chocolate mixture.

4. Sift the flour and salt together three times, and then (on the fourth sifting) sift into the chocolate/egg mixture.

5. Fold in the flour along with the rest of the egg and the vanilla.IMG_4063 6. Spoon into a tray lined with cupcake liners and bake on gas mark 5 for about 20 minutes. (NOTE – this is what I did and it worked, though next time, I might try them on a lower heat for slightly longer time as these were very brown by the time they’d cooked through).IMG_40647. When baked, leave on a cooling rack to cool and then ice.

To Make the Icing:

1. Break the white chocolate up into small pieces and then melt. As this is melting, place the icing sugar, margarine, milk and vanilla into a pan and stir together until the margarine has melted and the mixture thoroughly combined.IMG_4065 2. Add the melted chocolate to the warm icing sugar mixture and whisk together. IMG_4066 3. Beat egg whites in a separate bowl until they reach soft-to-medium peak.

4. Bring the chocolate/icing sugar mixture to the boil, remove from heat and SLOWLY drizzle over the egg whites, beating continuously (I don’t have a food processor, but managed to do this with a handheld mixer in one hand and the saucepan with the chocolate mixture in the other).

5. Once all the chocolate mixture has been added, keep beating as the mixture cools. Once it is warm, alternate leaving it in the fridge to cool further, for about 20 minutes at a time, and beating the mixture until it has reached a good consistency for piping. IMG_4067 6. Give the mixture one last beat with the mixer and then pipe or spread with a knife onto cupcakes.

7. Decorate with a mint leaf, or two, if you like!MintandWhiteChoc3 MintandWhiteChoc

IMG_4107As noted above, these cupcakes are my entry for this month’s IronCupcake:Earth challenge. The last day for entry is the 24th July (ie today – I have left this a bit late!). Voting is open from Tuesday 28th July until Wednesday 5th August at Go have a look and vote for me, if you think its worth it, or for whoever you think is the best. If you want to take part in future challenges, take a look at the IronCupcake:Earth website.

According to the IronCupcake:Earth website, the prizes for this month are:

Last and certainly not least, don’t forget our corporate prize providers: HEAD CHEFS by FIESTA PRODUCTS,, HELLO CUPCAKE by Karen Tack and Alan Richardson,, JESSIE STEELE APRONS; TASTE OF HOME books,; a t-shirt from UPWITHCUPCAKES.COM Iron Cupcake:Earth is sponsored in part by 1-800-Flowers, .

CoffeeChoc Marble Cupcakes with Mocha Marshmallow Topping


Unlike my previous attempt at marble cake, see here, this actually worked! The coffee and chocolate cake mixtures that I used are a bit of an experiment, and in the end, complimented the marshmallow topping beautifully, but if you have a favourite of each, go ahead and use it! As a variation, you could also fill the cupcakes with the marshmallow topping, and then ice them with a coffee (or, if you prefer, chocolate) icing. You can see examples of both variations below. To me, these actually tasted better the day after I made them, but that may just have been because of a sugar overload from too much tasting, er, um, I mean testing, as I made them. In the recipe below, 1 cup = 250 mls. I used a 250 ml. cup and just filled it to half, or a quarter (etc) as the recipe required. Using one cup saves on washing up, and using a mug I already own saves on buying measuring cups specially.

To make these cupcakes, you will need:

Coffee Cake Mixture:

2 eggs, separated

1/3 cup margarine or butter (I used margarine when I made this)

1 1/3 cups white sugar

1 tablespoon instant coffee powder

1/3 cup boiling water

1 3/4 cups self-raising flour

Pinch of salt

Chocolate Cake Mixture:

2 eggs, separated

1/3 cup margarine or butter (I used marg.)

3/4 cup white sugar

1 1/3 cup self-raising flour

3 dessertspoons cocoa powder

Pinch of salt

1/2 cup milk

Marshmallow Topping:

3 cups marshmallows (I used a mixture of pink and white ones)

3 dessertspoons margarine or butter (I used marg.)

3 dessertspoons cocoa powder

2 dessertspoons instant coffee

1/4 cup boiling water

2 1/2 cups icing sugar

CoffeeChocPicture2 To Make the Coffee Cake Mixture:

1. Beat the egg whites until stiff and put aside.

2. Cream together margarine/butter and white sugar. Add egg yolks to margarine/sugar mixture a little at a time, thoroughly mixing them in before adding the next bit.

3. Dissolve the instant coffee in the boiling water and mix into the margarine/sugar/egg yolk mixture.

4. Sift and fold the self-raising flour and salt into the margarine/sugar/egg yolk/coffee mixture.

5. Fold the egg whites into the mixture and put it aside whilst you make the chocolate cake.

To Make the Chocolate Cake Mixture:

1. Beat the egg whites until stiff and put aside.

2. Cream margarine and sugar together, then add and thoroughly mix in egg yolks, a little at a time.

3. Sift and fold in the flour, cocoa powder and salt.

4. Fold in the egg white.

To Make and Bake Cupcakes:

1. Line a cupcake tin with cupcake liners.

2. Drop about a teaspoon of each mixture into each cupcake liner and swirl together with the tip of a knife or the top end of a fork.

3. Bake in a pre-heated oven on about gas mark 5 1/2 for 20-25 minutes.

To Make Marshmallow Topping:


1. Dissolve the instant coffee powder into the boiling water.

2. Melt together the marshmallows, margarine, cocoa powder and coffee in a double boiler, or, as I did (see the photos above) in a heatproof bowl over boiling water, stirring occasionally.

3. When about half of the marshmallows have melted, add the milk.

4. When everything has melted together, remove it from the heat and thoroughly mix in the icing sugar. Put aside to cool.

To Finish:

There are two ways to finish these cupcakes. You can either simply top with the marshmallow topping, and perhaps sprinkle icing sugar or cocoa powder onto them in a decorative pattern…IMG_4050 …or you can fill them with the marshmallow topping, and then ice them with regular coffee or chocolate icing, and perhaps top them with a chocolate button or magic star.CoffeeChocPicture4

Monday, 13 July 2009

Back soon...

This is just a little note to say I haven't forgotten you, but will be back soon! Its been a rather busy few weeks for me. Coming up, hopefully in the next week, will be two cupcake recipes, including one that I might just enter into IronCupcake:Earth (I was having doubts but hubby assured me that the cupcakes are delicious and I must enter). Just got to do a photoshoot of the final result before I post those though. I'm also going to try think up some yummy savory recipes, so watch out for those in the next month or so. Til then, hope you have a great day!